Mexico seeks private firms in oil sector

Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto delivers a speech during the signing of the Energetic Reform initiative, in Mexico City, Mexico, on August 12, 2013.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has proposed broad reforms on the state-run oil industry that would allow foreign energy firmsâ„¢ access to the countryâ„¢s energy reserves.

On Monday, following talks with the Energy Secretary and Interior Minister in Mexico City, Pena Nieto submitted the Energetic Reform initiative, which proposes modifications on Mexicoâ„¢s Constitution.

The initiative would allow state-run oil company, Pemex (Petroleos Mexicanos), to form ventures with private energy firms who have been thrown out of the industry 75 years ago.

Pena Nieto said the move is aimed at reviving oil and gas production, while reducing prices and increasing employment.

Moreover, under the new deal, Pemex would maintain the stateâ„¢s ownership of all hydrocarbon resources.

Å“Oil and other hydrocarbons will continue to be the exclusive assets of the nation,” said Pena Nieto, adding that Pemex will remain Å“100 percent owned by the nation.”

Industry analysts warned that the initiative could face significant opposition as politicians have planned protests over the coming weeks against what they consider the privatization of publicly owned resources.

Mexico depends heavily on oil, with some 13.81 billion barrels of crude reserves, though much of it is expensive and complicated to tap.

Pemex said the industry needs about USD 30 billion a year in investments to bring production levels back up to 3.0 million barrels a day.

GMA/PR

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Republished from: Press TV